The CBC Bank has urged Belgians to exercise caution when buying homes and not to be carried away by the joy of doing so. In a report issued on Monday, just days ahead of the Batibouw construction and renovation fair (Feb 21 – Mar. 3) in Brussels, CBC said Belgians often became euphoric when purchasing real estate and tended not to plan for the future. Only one-third of them considered, for example, the possibility of their partners going bankrupt, it noted, adding that one in three did not know the estate tax on their homes.
Social changes, particularly at the family level, and regulatory measures have modified people’s relationship with real estate, according to the bank: it is harder to obtain a mortgage loan now than a few years ago, so three-quarters of Belgians are aware that such loans do not exceed 90% of the value of the home being bought.
The CBC observes that Belgians still have a big appetite for home-buying, even after the 2008 economic crisis. Some 65% say they own their homes, while 24% plan to buy one sometime soon.
They are also optimistic about the evolution of the market, with 74% believing they will be able to sell their homes for an amount equal to or higher than their investment, including notary fees, registration costs and repairs.
As part of its customer support, CBC intends to help rationalise home-buying and to make prospective buyers more aware of the euphoria that often takes hold of them.